Page:Jardine Naturalist's library Bees.djvu/204

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entering with their sovereign, as if aware of the danger of such intrusion. This is rather a perplexing state of things, and the best remedy we can suggest, is instantly to carry off the hive into which the queen has strayed, and to substitute in its place the one from which she had issued. The bees will readily enter; after which the two hives may be restored to their former places. If the strayed queen does not reappear in a very few minutes, we may conclude she has fallen a victim to her error; and the owner may console himself with the knowledge that the swarm will come off again in a very few days, with another queen.

Two swarms sometimes leave their hives at the same time, and in such cases almost always go together. If they are second swarms, it will be better to let them remain so; they will, when thus united, form a strong stock, and will collect much more honey than they could have done separately. If they are first swarms, and the season is not far advanced, it will be expedient to separate them; and for this purpose, let the whole mass be first received into an empty hive, and then, spreading a sheet on the floor of an empty apartment from which the light is partially excluded, let the hive be placed on it; a smart stroke on the top will send them down in a mass upon the sheet, and the bees, in a minute or two, will be observed collected into two groups, in the centre of each of which will be found a queen. Place an empty hive gently over each group, raising one side, that the bees may have easy access; and when housed, remove them to their proper stations, which should be some consider-